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An ethnoreligious group (or ethno-religious group) is an ethnic group of people whose members are also unified by a common religious background.[citation needed] Ethnoreligious communities define their ethnic identity neither exclusively by ancestral heritage nor simply by religious affiliation, but often through a combination of both[citation needed] (a long shared history; a cultural tradition of its own; either a common geographical origin, or descent from a small number of common ancestors; a common language, not necessarily peculiar to the group; a common literature peculiar to the group; a common religion different from that of neighbouring groups; being a minority or being an oppressed or a dominant group within a larger community).[citation needed]

In an ethnoreligious group, particular emphasis is placed upon religious endogamy, and the concurrent discouragement of interfaith marriages or intercourse, as a means of preserving the stability and historical longevity of the community and culture.[citation needed] This adherence to religious endogamy can also, in some instances, be tied to ethnic nationalism if the ethnoreligious group possesses a historical base in a specific region.[citation needed]

Contents

Ethnoreligious group as a legal concept

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Australia

In Australian law, the Anti-Discrimination Act 1977 (NSW) defines "race" to include "ethnic, ethno-religious or national origin".[1] The reference to "ethno-religious" was added by the Anti-Discrimination (Amendment) Act 1994 (NSW).[2] John Hannaford, the NSW Attorney-General at the time, explained that "The effect of the latter amendment is to clarify that ethno-religious groups, such as Jews, Muslims and Sikhs, have access to the racial vilification and discrimination provisions of the Act. ...extensions of the Anti-Discrimination Act to ethno-religious groups will not extend to discrimination on the ground of religion."[3][4]

The definition of "race" in Anti-Discrimination Act 1998 (Tas) likewise includes "ethnic, ethno-religious or national origin".[5] However, unlike the NSW Act, it also prohibits discrimination on the grounds of "religious belief or affiliation" or "religious activity".[6]

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom the landmark legal case Mandla v Dowell-Lee placed a legal definition on ethnic groups with religious ties, which in turn has paved the way for definition of ethnoreligious group.

The significance of this case was that groups like Sikhs and Jews could be protected under the Race Relations Act 1976. This has led to some subsequent controversial court decisions.[7]

Examples of ethnoreligious groups

The term "ethnoreligious" has been applied by at least one author to each of the following groups:

See also

Notes

  1. ^ "Anti-Discrimination Act 1977 Section 4". http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/nsw/consol_act/aa1977204/s4.html. 
  2. ^ Cunneen, Chris; David Fraser, Stephen Tomsen (1997). Faces of hate: hate crime in Australia. Hawkins Press. p. 223. ISBN 1876067055. http://books.google.com/books?id=R8nmw1wlgeUC. Retrieved 2010-02-14. 
  3. ^ "Anti-Discrimination (Amendment) Bill: Second Reading". Parliament of New South Wales. 2007-05-12. http://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/prod/PARLMENT/hansArt.nsf/V3Key/LA19940512044. Retrieved 14 February 2010. 
  4. ^ Gareth Griffith (February 2006). Sedition, Incitement and Vilification: Issues in the Current Debate. NSW Parliamentary Library Research Service. p. 52. ISBN 0731317920. http://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/prod/parlment/publications.nsf/0/57ba30f38d3c969cca25710f0023442f/$FILE/Sedition%20FINAL.pdf. Retrieved 14 February 2010. 
  5. ^ "ANTI-DISCRIMINATION ACT 1998 - SECT 3". Tasmanian Consolidated Acts. AustLII. 2 February 2010. http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/tas/consol_act/aa1998204/s3.html. Retrieved 14 February 2010. 
  6. ^ "ANTI-DISCRIMINATION ACT 1998 - SECT 16". Tasmanian Consolidated Acts. AustLII. 2 February 2010. http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/tas/consol_act/aa1998204/s16.html. Retrieved 14 February 2010. 
  7. ^ http://www.standpointmag.co.uk/node/1851
  8. ^ Minahan 2002, p. 52
  9. ^ a b c d Thomas 2006
  10. ^ Levey
  11. ^ Winter 1996
  12. ^ a b Harrison, p. 121
  13. ^ Minahan 2002, p. 209
  14. ^ http://balkanologie.revues.org/index585.html
  15. ^ http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~content=a915188403&db=all
  16. ^ Minahan 2002, p. 467
  17. ^ Minahan 2002, p. 744
  18. ^ Minahan 2002, p. 914
  19. ^ Minahan 2002, p. 1194
  20. ^ Ehrlich, p. 315
  21. ^ Ireton 2003
  22. ^ Minahan 2002, p. 2030

References


The term ethnoreligious (or ethno-religious) refers to an ethnic group of people whose members are also unified by a common religious background. Ethnoreligious communities define their ethnic identity neither exclusively by ancestral heritage nor simply by religious affiliation, but often through a combination of both (a long shared history; a cultural tradition of its own; either a common geographical origin, or descent from a small number of common ancestors; a common language, not necessarily peculiar to the group; a common literature peculiar to the group; a common religion different from that of neighbouring groups; being a minority or being an oppressed or a dominant group within a larger community).

In an ethnoreligious group, particular emphasis is placed upon religious endogamy, and the concurrent discouragement of interfaith marriages or intercourse, as a means of preserving the stability and historical longevity of the community and culture. This adherence to religious endogamy can also, in some instances, be tied to ethnic nationalism if the ethnoreligious group possesses a historical base in a specific region.

Contents

=Legal Definition

=

In the United Kingdom the landmark legal case Mandla (Sewa Singh) and another v Dowell Lee and others (1983) 2 AC 548, placed a legal definition on ethnoreligious group.

In this case an ethnoreligious group was defined as:

  1. a long shared history, of which the group is conscious as distinguishing it from other groups, and the memory of which it keeps alive;
  2. a cultural tradition of its own, including family and social customs and manners, often but not necessarily associated with religious observance. In addition to those two essential characteristics the following characteristics are, in my opinion, relevant:
  3. either a common geographical origin, or descent from a small number of common ancestors;
  4. a common language, not necessarily peculiar to the group;
  5. a common literature peculiar to the group;
  6. a common religion different from that of neighbouring groups or from the general community surrounding it;
  7. being a minority or being an oppressed or adominant group within a larger community, for example a conquered people (say, theinhabitants of England shortly after the Norman conquest) and their conquerors might bothbe ethnic groups

The significance of this case was that groups like Sikhs and Jews could be protected under the Race Relations Act 1976.

Legally Defined Ethnoreligious groups

Jews

The Jews in the United Kingdom are a legally[1] defined[2] ethnoreligious community. Ascertaining and defining membership in the Jewish people (the question of "who is a Jew") involves both a traditional religious component and an ethnic one.

Sikhs

Alongside Jews, Sikhs [3][4] were legally defined as an ethnoreligious group, in the landmark "Mandla Case"[5].

Non-Legally Defined Ethno-religious Groups

Other ethnoreligious communities which combine ethnic identity with religious belonging include

References

See also

External links


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